Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Recitation of Facts


Wellity, wellity, wellity.  D.C.  Check.  Virginia.  Check.  Drinking back stage with rockstars check.  So I went on down to the the ol' D.C. Metro Area to visit my friends that I visited in Korea that I haven't seen since...Korea.  Normally this would involve a ton of shenanigans.  However, Greg came back from over seas with not one, but two broken arms, rendering him slightly incapable of nonsense.  So while other trips around the country have been beer-centric, this one was hanging-out-centric, which was perfectly find by me.  We started Friday night in D.C.  Our senior year of college, Greg and I lived in the greatest apartment ever known to man with four other doods.  Here's how cool we were.  We started calling ourselves and our apartment the Cool Guys Club.  Ok, so that's not that cool, but here's the stuck.  Other people started calling our place the Cool Guys Club, which then became the CGC.  People, who weren't us, would legitimately say things to other people, who also weren't us, "Hey, you going to the party tonight at the CGC?"  It was sort of like anti-frat house.  This is all to say that two of those roommates are now members of pretty well known indie rock band.  Their band happened to be playing a show in D.C. that Friday night that Greg, Britney, Liz and I went to.  Had a Brooklyn Lager back stage at the venue while catching up with the guys and then a Victory Hop Devil while watching them play.  Hey, did you know its hard to drink beer without any arms?  Well, according to Greg, it is.

Saturday we milled about Old Town Arlington which is very nice and pleasant to an almost absurd degree.  Had a Harpoon IPA with lunch.  Greg drank his beer through a straw.  Saturday night we hung out at Britney's place and drank a fair amount while playing board games.  If I remember correctly, which of course I do, I had 2 Josephbrau (the Trader Joes brand) Kolsches, 1 Josephbrau Oatmeal Stout, and 1 Ommegang Abbey Ale.  Ok, so it wasn't a ton of drinking.  But did you know that if you've broken both arms and have been living on pain meds for a week, your drinking tolerance goes down?  Who knew?

Sunday we bid Greg and Britney adieu, but not before having a Bells Two Hearted Ale (casked!) at a pretty awesome pizza/beer place.  Then jumped on a bus and went home.  At home I had a Great Divide Porter, a Great Divide Scotch Ale, and a Long Trail Ale.

Monday I had a Great Divide Samauri and a Great Divide Titan IPA.

Tuesday I had nothing!

Look, I had a job interview today for one of those jobs that pays you to do stuff on a full time basis.  What're they called?  Actual jobs.  Right.  Anyway, I can't tell you how much energy I sinked into this thing.  All my charm and creative juices are gone, man, gone.  I thought about delaying this, but it is what it is.  I'm going to go to Pub Quiz now and post an announcement and, hopefully, an accompanying itinerary tomorrow.

Hugs and kisses,
This Guy

Numbers: Tomorrow

Friday, September 24, 2010


Always with the house keeping.  I didn't drink any beers last night, so we can all calm down about that.  I'm posting because I'm off to Fairfax, VA/Washington D.C. tonight and thought I would give you heads up about the lack of posts this weekend.  When I get back, I will have drank a beer in the following states this year: New York, Arizona, Michigan, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and D.C., so that's pretty cool.  I'm going to try and sneak in at least one or two more states there before the year ends.

Also, as of this moment (ok, not this moment, but more like in 6 or so hours) My 1000 Beer Year is sending someone to Germany to report on Oktoberfest.  Ok, that's not entirely true.  Friend of the Blog (FOB) Eric is heading to Oktoberfest and just to rub it in my face that he's going and I'm not has offered to write something up for this ol' blog when he gets back.  I'm pretty excited about it.  Also, I'm pretty excited that the best written/most interesting thing that will probably ever go up on this blog won't be written by me.  You guys should get AMPED.

I'll be back on Sunday.  See you chumps then.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

100 Days Left of Beer Drinking

What the hell happened here.  I turn my back for like one second and I already have a huge backup in terms of drinking days.  I mean I posted seven thousand weeks ago, and then posted an African beer post, and that's it.  There has been a TON of beer drinking since then (well not a ton, but a significant amount).  I hate to do this, but it's time for another "Numbers only" post.  Regrettable, I know, but if I kid myself into thinking that I'm going to provide my usual array of insightful commentary then I will never post again.  So here we go!

Last Wednesday: The 3 Africa beers (3)
Last Thursday: 4 Sam Adams Octoberfests at the apartment (4)
Last Friday: 1 Sixpoint Brownstone at Hot Bird, 1 MGD High Life and 1 Red Stripe at Woodwork, 1 Ommegang Wit at the Branded Saloon (4)
Last Saturday: 2 Cigar City Jai Alai IPAs at the apartment (2)
Last Sunday: 1 Great Divide Samurai Rice Ale, 1 Great Divide Claymore Scotch Ale, 1 Great Divide St. Bridget's Port, 1 Long Trail Pale Ale, and 1 Long Trail Belgian Ale at the apartment while watching football for 12 hours (5)
Last Monday: 1 Six Point White Ale, 1 Ommegang Rare Vos, both at Franklin Park (2)
Last Tuesday: Nuthin!
Last Night: 1 Great Divide Titan IPA, 1 Cigar City Jai Alai IPA, both at the apartment (2)

That's a lot of beer drinking and I honestly do have quite a bit to say about a fair amount of it.  But, alas, I'm late for a meeting!*

But before I leave you, I'll put up some sweet Simpsons clips dealing with drinking, to, you know, keep the masses happy.

Total Beers: 755 (hey over 3/4 of the way done!)
Where I Should Be: 726.027 (Hey, yesterday marked day 265 of beer drinking, meaning only 100 more days to go!)

*Not really.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Making A Difference Through Beer

Negligence, thy name is Ryan.  In this case, the negligence is two fold.  First: about two months whole months ago, my Uncle Chris shipped me a second round of beers from Africa.  I did not drink them until last Wednesday.  As you may recall, I had an extended vacation in there and I didn't want to drink them until I could put up a decent post about them, so I had to wait until I finished updating about the vacation, which as you know took about a month.  Second: as you may have noticed, today is Tuesday.  I drank them almost a whole week ago and yet no post is up.  Well, as I rectified the first act of negligence, now shall I rectify the second.  Ryan Responsibility is..."The Rectifier," Tuesdays at 8 on TNT.

As an initial matter, the flavors of the following beers may or may not be altered by my sophisticated aging process.  I have no idea when exactly Chris purchased the beers, but I do know that he flew with them from Kenya to America.  Then sometime after he arrived in the States, he shipped them from Michigan, I believe.  Then they arrived at my apartment.  Then two months later I drank them.  So, it really could have been upwards of six months from purchase to consumption.  If I had a time machine, I would like to age a beer a year, go back in time that year and drink it side by side an un-aged version of that beer.  Oh sure, you can age a beer and then compare it to the brewery's fresh release of that beer, but it's not the same.  Like right now I'm aging a 2009 Bethlehem Brew Works Rude Elf which I intend on drinking side by side with a 2010 Bethlehem Brew Works Rude Elf.  But you know what would be spectacular?  If I could age a 2009 Rude Elf and taste it side by side with an un-aged 2009 Rude Elf.  Stupid linear nature of time and all of that.  So with that in mind, these beers had been slightly aged.

I'll discuss the beers in the order I drank them because it actually makes sense to do so this time.  First up, Sierra Amber.  Once again, this isn't to be mistaken for a Sierra Nevada beer.  It's the Amber from the fine people at the Nairobian (is that what you call people from Nairobi?) brewery Sierra.  I'd previously had their porter which was perfectly serviceable.  Chris had told me that the Porter was Sierra's best offering so when I got the Amber, I had expected a perfectly drinkable, but unspectacular, amber ale.  What I got was a legitimately delicious, really caramel-y, really sweet (but not in a sickly way) amber ale.  Seriously, this beer was great.  If I had to compare it to something you might have had (I don't have to but I'm going to anyways) I'd say it tastes a lot like Triple Carmelite, which is to say, amazing.  It doesn't quite have the alcohol content as a Triple Carmelite, but it does have that robust caramel taste.  Also, I hate myself a little for using the word robust here.  Unlike the porter, the amber was anything but thin.  I don't know if my "cellaring" the beer added to its greatness, but I'd sure like to find out.  Suffice it to say, I was surprised.  This beer isn't good for an African beer.  It's a good beer period.

The next beer I drank was a Nile Special Lager from Uganda.  This beer brings up an interesting juxtaposition between beer critics/reviewers and person-on-the-street beer drinkers.  If you google this beer, you'll find a couple of interesting things.  First, beer reviewers hate it.  All your beer review sites give it low grades.  If you scroll through the comments on beeradvocate, you'll find people saying its worse than your Buds and Coors.  Second, backpackers love it.  It has its own facebook fan page.  Every backpacker that has been through Africa raves about it as the best beer they've ever had.  They can't wait to get back to Uganda to drink another Nile Special.  I kid you not, it seems to generate the kind of adulation reserved for jam bands (although I suspect that the venn diagram of "Backpackers in Africa" and "Jam Band Enthusiasts" would be largely overlapping).  To force a metaphor, the debate over Nile Special Lager evokes a certain Congress v. Generals-on-the-ground debate over war policy/strategy.  Oh sure, Congress/Beer Reviewers, enjoy your view from those ivory towers but we're the ones that know the conditions on the ground.  Well sorry, Beer Critics, but beer drinking doesn't necessitate civilian oversight.  The drinkers have won out.  I'm here to report, this beer is good.  Honestly, truly, very good.  To put it in perspective, I liked it more than about half of Schmaltz's line (He-brew and Coney Island included), so I can imagine that if you're traveling through Africa and come across this gem of a beer, it's going to stand out.  It's one of those beers that makes you wish summer was longer because this really needs to be drank out doors on sunny summer afternoon.  Even more shocking, that's two for two so far on excellent beers from Africa.  Again, not even great contextually.  Just great.  Also, as you noticed if you clicked that link, their slogan is "Making a Difference Through Beer."  I like that.  A lot.

Speaking of sweet slogans, the third beer I had was the venerable White Bull Lager, which I documented at length in my previous African beers post.  Ok, so White Bull Lager doesn't stand up so well taste-wise to the prior two beers, but its ability to make me super sappy and emotional is off the charts.  You can't drink a White Bull Lager without stopping to think, "Holy shit, I am drinking a beer made in Southern Sudan."  It's phenomenal.  The bottle that my uncle sent me had the back label printed on upside down which makes me believe that one day the bottle will be worth more than those weird misprinted stamps or coins everyone (everyone?) is always going on about.  True to form, when I drank the White Bull Lager, I gathered everyone's (Liz's) attention and make a lengthy speech about the magnitude of the occasion and what it meant to be sitting in a cushy Brooklyn apartment drinking a quite drinkable beer from Southern Sudan.  We drank, of course, to Peace and Prosperity.  Well that's not exactly right.  You drink to something that has passed or has yet to be.  White Bull Lager celebrates peace and prosperity in its existing form.  So we celebrated Peace and Prosperity.  I'd like to have that attitude with every beer I drink because the fact that I'm able to drink a tasty brew means that there is at least some modicum of peace and prosperity happening in my life/in the world, and as White Bull Lager reminds me, I don't celebrate that enough.  My 1000 Celebrations of Peace and Prosperity Year.  If it rhymed, the title would already be changed.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Gotta Keep the Devil Way Down in the Hole

The beer drinking has been pretty light around here.  This is the round up: Monday I had a Smuttynose Pumpkin Ale at Soda with dinner (we tried to go to a new place out on Vanderbilt but turns out it's not too vegetarian friendly.  What else is new?)  Last night I had a 21st Amendment Back in Black on the couch.  Woo!  But here's what I want to talk about.  More like here's what I want to show you.

I'm marginally convinced that Bunk from the Wire and Garrett Oliver, Brooklyn Brewery Brewmaster are the same person.  Here's an exchange involving one of them:

Guy A: You know what they call a guy that pays that much attention to his clothes don't you?
Guy B: A grown-up.

Guy B is either Garrett Oliver or Bunk.  You decide!

I don't really know where I was going with this.  I just wanted to put a bunch of pictures of Garrett Oliver and Bunk next to each other to see if it would be as weird as I'd imagine.  It is!  See you tomorrow with an African beer post!

Total Beers: 733
Where I Should Be: 704.109

Monday, September 13, 2010

Two Bad Neighbors

Sorry for the day between posts here.  But let's see where I last left you.  Saturday during the day, Liz and I took advantage of the weather and strolled on out to the Gate.  While there I had a Jolly Pumpkin Calabaza Blanca.  You might recall that I went to the Jolly Pumpkin brewery in Ann Arbor a short while ago.  This was the first time I had seen any Jolly Pumpkin outside of Michigan, so that was cool.  Their Calabaza Blanca was, you guessed it, kind of sour, but still super delicious and really, really refreshing.  This got me to thinking: why don't breweries have a signature taste?  I mean I know why, but bare with me for a moment.  I guess this isn't a normative thing, but there are very few breweries that you could blindly taste one of their beers and know it came from that specific brewery.  I mean if you had a super hoppy beer you could maybe guess Dogfish Head or if you had a super thin and water beer of any style you could guess Saranac.  I guess I just thought it would be cool if Jolly Pumpkin made a bunch of different styles of beer but purposefully made each beer nice and sour, or as their website says "refreshingly tart," so when you drank, let's say, a sour Imperial Stout, you'd know it was from Jolly Pumpkin.

Also at the Gate I had a Cigar City Humidor Gruit.  This is going to sound crazy, but that was my first Cigar City beer.  From what I gather, their Humidor Series is a line of their normal beers they age in cedar casks.  Gruit itself is pretty crazy.  It's made with no hops!  I'd go on about it, but just check out this article and inform yourselves!  Suffice it to say, it was also very good and very drinkable.  But then again, I think the weather made just about anything drinkable.  If I had a barleywine at the Gate that day I'd probably be talking about how I could session the eff out of it.  In other news, I like drinking beer outdoors in 72 degree sunny weather.

Then on Sunday I watched football, ate nachos (really!), and drank beer (also really!).  I had a Mother's Milk Stout and a 21st Amendment Back in Black.  Neither day was really a heavy drinking day, but the beer, weather, and football was quality (ok maybe not the football as I was watching the Bengal's game).  All in all, a good couple of days!

Total Beers: 731
Where I Should Be: 698.630

Saturday, September 11, 2010


Let's keep this gravy train rolling.  Yesterday I had a Brooklyn Lager at home on the couch.  Departed for the East Village.  Had a Bud (didn't buy it!) at Holiday Cocktail Lounge, one of the more infamous dives of NYC.  Let me explain for a second why I had a Bud.  First, this is a dive amongst dives so the selection is limited.  Second, a bottle of Heineken was 8 bucks!  8!  A shot of whiskey and a Bud (a "Holiday Happy Meal") was only 7.  That's simple math right there.  Afterwards we went over to the ol' standby Lunasa where I had three Brooklyn Lagers.  Suffice it to say, we did Fashion Night Out right.  And by that I mean not at all.  I would like to report (not really) that we spent the evening hobnobbing with Kanye at some boutique but I don't have any money and don't care about fashion!

I want to prep you all for a couple things real quick.  First, sometime between now and the end of October I will be doing a 5 Boroughs, 5 Beers, 1 Day tour, meaning I will attempt to drink a beer in every borough in NYC in the course of one day (which, let's be real, will be a 12 hour time span).  If you're interested in joining any part of it, I will keep you posted.  Second, I think I have a plan for my 1000th beer.  This is in no way set in stone, but I thought I would give everyone a heads up.  It's probably, if all goes to plan, will go down on December 19th at the Brooklyn Brewery.  Again, formal announcement to come soon, but if anyone cared to join me for this momentous occasion, I thought ample heads up would be appreciated.  It's not?  Well fine then.  Be that way.

Total Beers: 727
Where I Should Be: 693.150

Friday, September 10, 2010

The Day After Yesterday

Would you look at that.  I'm back a whopping one day later and with a very moderate update.  Last night I had a 21st Amendment Back in Black on my couch after an epic run, as science has proven beer is better for you than water.  The Back in Black is their new limited release canned beer.  It's a black IPA.  Not as great as the immortal Monks Blood, but pretty good!  Then went to dinner at this dope South African place in Forte Green called Madiba.  Didn't have a beer there but it might have been one of the best meals I've ever had, so if you're in the area, check it out.  From there we went to Woodwork on Vanderbilt for the first.  It's a soccer bar, but they were nice enough to put on good ol' fashioned American football for me.  There I had a Troegg's Pale Ale, and a Victory Prima Pils.  Liz got two red stripes.  You know what our final tab was for the four beers?  14 dollars!  In NYC!  That's nuts!  Anyway, then I went home, had a Brooklyn Lager, and started the 3rd season of the Wire.  All in all, a great night and a short post!

Total Beers: 722
Where I Should Be: 690.410

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Numbers! So Many Numbers!

So this is it.  I'm going to do a number dump here of all the beers I have drank since coming back from Canada.  And then, THEN, it's numbers time.  This is kind of exciting because I really have no clue what the total number will look like.  Also, I have done the numbers in OVER A MONTH.  That's just crazy.  Also, there's a lot of stuff worth talking about that's going to have to just flat out get cut for time.  I may make an interjection here and there, but obviously when you're dropping three weeks worth of beer drinking numbers in one post, space is limited.  Also, just to jog your memory, I'm going to go ahead and post my whole list of beers I've had since Michigan with the total beers drank in parentheses at the end of each day to help me count them.  Also, the parenthetical numbers take into account my new sampler conversion.  Also, here's the list:

8/6 – Mission Street Brown Ale at the Hotel (1)
8/7 – Library Something Porter at the Farm, Keewanaw Brown Ale at Hill Top, Keewanaw Widow Maker, Blatz at Farm (4)
8/8 – 1 Keewnaw Brown at Farm, 2 Sam Adams and 1 Old Milwaukee at Grandma’s Party, 3 Blatz and 1 Keewanaw Brown back at Farm (8)
8/9 – 1 Keewanaw Pickaxe Blonde at Ambassador, 10 samples at the Library, 1 Library IPA and 1 Library Keewanaw Gold from Growlers at the Farm, 1 Blatz at Farm (7)
8/10 – Budweiser at bowling, Celis Grand Cru, Dundee Stout, 4 Strohs at Farm (7)

Here's where I went to Alpena.

8/11 – Bells Oberon (1)
8/12 – 2 Bells Oberons, 1 Bells Two Hearted Ale (all at lake) (3)
8/13 – 2 Short’s Brewing Pandemonium Ales (all at lake) (2)
8/14 – 1 Short’s on Boat, 1 Northern Peak Archangel at the Portage, 1 Short’s back at lake (3)

...and to Ann Arbor

8/15 – Grizzly Peak Flight 9, Jolly Pumpkin Bam Biere (really sour farmhouse ale, waitress kept saying everything was sour, I didn’t believe her, but she was right) (4)
8/16 – 1 Two Hearted Ale, 1 Bell’s Amber Ale in Molly’s back yard (2)
8/17 – 1 Ann Arbor Brewing Co. ESB and 1 Anniversary, Blue Tractor Sampler 6, Jolly Pumpkin Bam Noire (5)

...and back to NYC

8/18 – Victory Whirlwind Wit (1)
8/19 – Victory WW, Buttnut Can, 2 Founders Pale Ales at Franklin Park (4)

...and to Canada

8/20 – Griffon Blonde, Griffon Rouse at bar that musician owns, 2 B (something candian) Rouse and 1 Blonde at other bar, 1664 at irish pub, mystery beer at punk/goth club (7)
8/21 – 2 Molson Drys in hotel, Moosehead at Crobar, IPA, Scotch Ale, Honey Brown at Brutopia, Stella at dance club (7)

...and back to NYC.  Here's where beer drinking I haven't talked about begins.

8/25 – 1 Sierra Nevada Tumbler at bierkraft, 3 Blue Point Oatmeal Stouts at apartment (4)
8/26 – 1 Bark Red Ale (1)
8/27 – 1 BK Detonation, 1 BK Pennant, 1 BK EIPA at the Brooklyn Brewery (3)

I wanted to jump in here and say that the Brooklyn Detonation Ale is out of control.  It's like the Blast but amped up times 10.

8/28 – 1 River Horse Triple Horse and 2 Speakeasy White Lightnings at Rachel’s, 1 BK Lager at Lunasa. (4)
8/30 – 3 Defiant IPAs out of a Growler at home, 1 Molson Dry out of a can at home (4)
9/1 – 1 Sam Adams Blackberry Wit at Home (1)
9/2 – 2 Steamwhistle Pils at Home (2)

Steam Whistle Brewing Company is microbrewery out of Toronto.  My in-laws went and brought me back a six-pack of their pilsner, which is, coincidentally, all that they make.  It was pretty good and tasted, I thought, more like a golden ale than a pilsner, but still very good.  Apparently this stuff was all over Toronto, which is cool because it was definitely better than the stuff that was all over Montreal.  I blame the French.  Does it seem weird to you that these 2 beers get a whole paragraph while I'm glossing over everything else?  Well, when you bring me beers, you get rewarded (also, just so my uncle doesn't think I've forgotten about him, the next three Africa beers are sitting in my fridge and I will probably drink them tomorrow).

9/3 – 2 Yuenglings at City Bar, 2 Red Stripes at Happy Ending, 1 Blue Point at Home Sweet Home, 1 Beer at some bar? (6)
9/5 – 1 Coney Island Albino Python at Coney Island Freak Show (1)

I drank a bottle of the Coney Island Albino Python while actually watching the snake-charmer on the label of the bottle perform, which was pretty interesting.

9/6 – 1 Coney Island Lager at Franklin Park (1)
9/7 – 2 Brooklyn Lagers, 1 21st Amendment Back in Black, 1 Yuengling Black and Tan on campus during draft, 1 Brooklyn Lager back at home (5)
9/8 – 2 Six Point Bark Red Ales at Bark, 2 Rare Vos, 1 Founders Pale Ale at Franklin Park during Trivia (5)

And that's the list.  You might notice some days are missing.  Well, I didn't drink beers those days so get off my back.  Time to do some math.  Here we go.

Total beers I have drank since I last did the numbers: 103

Total Beers: 718
Where I Should Be: 687.671 (Still ahead!  I thought I would be further ahead, but I did take a considerable amount of days off.  Well, 31 beers ahead, I'll take it!)

Well folks, tomorrow we get back to the day to day stuff.  Man I am looking forward to writing normal sized posts and updating more regularly.  See you then!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Just A Small Town Girl

And then there was Canada.  And then there was the two weeks or so since I've been back.  We'll get to those two weeks tomorrow in a post that will literally be me copying and pasting my word doc.  Hey, but before I went to Canada, I was in NYC for two nights (I got back from Michigan on a Wednesday evening, went to Canada Friday morning).  On the first night I got back I had a Victory Whirlwind Wit at home, the next night I had a Victory Whirlwind Wit and a Butternut Weiss at home and 2 Founders Pale Ales at Franklin Park with doods planning our Canada trip.

So while I was in Michigan, the guys decided we were going to go to Montreal for a weekend.  Why?  I still have no idea.  It was essentially a weekend long bachelor party but none of were getting married.  Also, I don't have any pictures because let's be real, I'm not taking pictures of our shenanigans.  The record on the weekend is a little shaky.  I mean the numbers are legit, but there are a few cases where I don't remember beer or bar names.  After my Michigan posts dropped, my dad marveled at my ability to remember all of those beers I drank.  Well, here's the thing, I didn't actually retain the memories of all those beers.  After everyday, I would write down in a word doc what I drank and where I drank it so I wouldn't have to worry about forgetting beers.  In Montreal, I didn't have my laptop, nor did I have my phone.  My other trick is text myself what beers I've drank when I'm out at bars, and being phone-less, I couldn't even do that.  So, therefore, in conclusion, with that said, as such, I've got the numbers on lock down, but the specific details, well they get a little fuzzy here and there.

Our trip began fine enough with the border guy asking not if we had any weed in the car, but whether we smoked weed, which was kind of weird.  He went through the laundry list of items that I guess border agents are supposed to ask, and then at the end, just asked if we smoked weed.  I'm 80% sure he was asking because we seemed like cool guys he wanted to hang with that evening, but we said no and went on our merry way!  The first beers I drank in Canada were at this vegetarian bar/restaurant Casa del Popolo that the singer from Mars Volta or something owns.  Had a Griffon Blonde and a Griffon Rouse there, both were just ok!  The thing about this trip to Montreal was our planning literally ended at going to that restaurant when we got there.  From there we figured we'd just ask around and go where the wind took us.  Let's see how that worked out!

A quick interjection here.  My near and dear friend Saeed told us a wonderful Iranian proverb while we were on the trip.  "Cat can't grab the meat.  Says, 'Piff piff, it's off.'"  His American translation was, you know when a guy goes and tries to pick up a girl and strikes out and then says that the girl was beat or he didn't want to pick her up anyway?  Well that's a cat that can't grab the meat, so he's saying "Piff piff, it's off."  Now I'm not saying we weren't a group of five stone-cold lady killers, but there were a few times where the cats couldn't grab the meat, as it were.  So we're at Casa del Popolo, looking to head to another bar, so two of my cohorts approach a group of ladies to get a recommendation of where to go next.  Apparently, apparently, these ladies don't speak English.  Now I know we're in Quebec here, but I'm about 90% certain that all Quebecois (is that the term for people from Quebec?) speak English.  So when the guys come back and tell me this, I'm pretty sure these cats could not grab the meat and these girls were just messing with them.  But this story takes a shocking turn later!

So we meander out of the bar.  It's still pretty early (like 10 or so) so we find a dive-y looking sports bar to grab a couple of pitchers and watch awful Canadian football while we wait for things to pick up.  We ordered a pitcher of Bsomethingcanadian Blonde and Bsomethingcanadian Rouse.  I had one of the former and two of the latter.  Then it was off to hit the town!  Unfortunately, the part of the town we were hitting was smack dab in the middle of McGill University and only had super-expensive, shall we say, tre-douchey night clubs.  So we stubbled into an insanely over priced faux-Irish pub.  Canada has those too!  I get a 1664 (that's a beer).  While this place kind of sucked, it did provide two very interesting insights about Montreal.  First, Montrealian people do not care for Journey.  There was a pretty competent, general cover band playing the bar.  They closed their set with Journey's "Don't Stop Believing."  Now anyone who has ever been to a bar in America knows that whenever that song is played, something akin to this happens:

People go nuts.  Everyone will stop what they're doing and just start singing along.  I don't know why this happens, but no one can deny that it does in fact happen.  Doesn't matter what type of bar.  You play that song any time after 10 pm anywhere and people will go nuts.  You know what happened in this faux-Irish bar when they played it?  Nothing.  Absolutely nothing.  People kept on conversing as if there wasn't even a band playing.  It was so crazy.  This led me to the second interesting insight about Montreal.  Girls in Montreal do not speak any English.  There is your shocking twist to the previous story as well.  After the song was over, I approached a group of girls to ask them about why no one went nuts for the song and if they knew any place we could go around there.  None of them spoke more English than you would learn in an English 101 course.  I mean obviously this cat can grab the meat (ok, I'm done with that phrase now, as it now just sounds disgusting), so these girls clearly weren't just messing with me.  So there you have it.  Despite living in Canada, Montreal women do not speak English.  I believe my sample size is large enough to state that as a definitive fact.  After that bar, we go to, let's say a place.  Then we leave that place and a few of us go this goth-punk club and watch a pretty good French-Canadian hardcore band.  I don't know why I was shocked that Montreal had something akin to a "scene," as its a major city and all.  I have a beer, but for the life of me can't remember what it was.  Also, I could have sworn that I heard the band covering Minor Threat's "Straight Edge," in French, but they were also chugging whiskey by the bottle, so maybe not!

On the walk home I found out another interesting tidbit about Montreal.  It is filled with prostitutes.  Disgusting, disgusting prostitutes, that will proposition you in ways and for things that you would not imagine.  For instance, you'd imagine a normal prostitute would say something like, "Hey boys, do you want 'A'?" 'A' being the first and most obvious thing in the lexical order of what prostitutes might offer.  In Montreal, prostitutes would say things like, "Hey boys, do you want 'n'?" meaning that they have already passed the A through Z of sexual things a prostitute might offer, started over at 'a' and made it all the way to 'n' and decided that 'n' was what they should offer from the get go.  I'm not saying I know anything about prostitutes, so maybe this is common place, but I would imagine that a normal prostitute would offer me 'A' and I'd have to artfully negotiate up to 'n'.  Nope.  Not in Montreal.  So there's that!

The next day we woke up and summited Mount Royal.  That's not a euphemism for anything.  We really did climb to the top of a mountain.  Then we went to an art museum.  But none of that has anything to with beer (then again neither did the prostitute story, but it's my blog so we can all deal with things).  After the art museum, I drank two Molson Drys in the hotel, then we went to the casino where I came out a whole loonie ahead, then to dinner and then to downtown!  First stop was Crobar, which we hurried into to get out of the rain.  It was filled with 17 year olds and over priced beer, so I downed a Moosehead Lager and got the hell out of there.  Next stop was Brutopia, an honest-to-God (happy parents?) microbrewery in Montreal.  I had their IPA, their Scotch Ale, and their Honey Brown.  The Scotch Ale was really good, the other two were just ok.  Then it was to a dance club!  If my calculations are correct, the Montreal population is something like 30% women ages 19 and under and 70% guys of all ages.  These numbers do not make for good dance clubs.  But we persisted.  I drank a Stella.  Saeed was the only one who had any sort of luck talking with girls. Dave and I danced on some stage till some girls, to the delight of the million doods in the place, gently pushed us off and took over.  Then we went to a place I'd rather just not talk about where I drank some beers I can't count toward my total anyway, on account of them being macrobeers.  Then we went back to the hotel at about 3 in the morning!  Then we left Canada!  All in all, Canada reaffirmed my belief in free market capitalism, the English language, and the superiority of the good ol' U.S. of A.  USA!  USA!  USA!  USA!